Fognini had given Italy a 1-0 lead on the opening day, defeating Taro Daniel in five sets. Andrea Seppi, Italy's second singles player, fought hard but just could not manage to follow Fognini's footsteps, losing to Yuichi Sugita in five sets. The tie being levelled at 1-1, Fabio teamed up with his longtime teammate Simone Bolelli the following day, facing Japanese doubles pair Ben McLachlan and Yasutaka Uchiyama in front of their home crowd. The 2015 Australian Open champions managed to restore Italy's lead after just over 3:30 hours, defeating the Japanese pair in four sets. Coming into the final and decisive day with a 2-1 lead, Fognini was to face Japanese No. 1 player Yuichi Sugita and it proofed to be another remarkable Davis Cup encounter for both players. Fabio saved one match point in the fourth set tiebreak, which he won 8-6, before claiming a 3-6 6-1 3-6 7-6 (8-6) 7-5 success and the tie for Italy.
Fabio Fognini spend almost 12 hours on court within 48 hours, playing 14 grueling sets and this might have been the toughest Davis Cup tie he played throughout his career, but it also showed how much heart, passion and persistence he's got when it comes to representing his country.
Italy – Japan 3-1
Fabio Fognini (ITA) - Taro Daniel (JPN) 6-4 3-6 4-6 6-3 6-2
Andrea Seppi (ITA) - Yuichi Sugita (JPN) 6-4 2-6 4-6 6-4 6-7
Fognini/Bolelli (ITA) - McLaghlan/Uchiyama (JPN) 7-5 6-7 7-6 7-5
Fabio Fognini (ITA) - Yuichi Sugita (JPN) 3-6 6-1 3-6 7-6 7-5
Italy will now face defending champion France in a home match on April 6-8, 2018.